ISLAMABAD    -   Azad Jammu and Kashmir President Sardar Masood Khan has said that apart from what has been termed as ‘Islamophobia’, recent comments made by French President Emmanuel Macron are indicative of rising European nationalism and remnants of imperialism. 

Addressing the senior faculty during a visit to University of Health Sciences (UHS) on Thursday, he said the issue of Kashmir had come out of the nationalism borders because of civilizational fault lines.

“India is using the cover of COVID-19 to ethnically cleanse Kashmiris. This is the eighth stage of genocide. In Occupied Kashmir, a child can be sentenced to two years for merely chanting the slogan of independence. They are being persecuted because they are Muslims,” Khan said.

He further said that India was doing the same to Kashmiris what Nazis did in the 1930s  to the Jews. “India has taken a leaf from the Israeli playbook; it is adopting the so-called Nuremberg laws in Indian-Occupied Kashmir which are aimed at forcing people to migrate,” he said.

Sardar Masood Khan further said that India was in a war frenzy and, therefore, it was fighting with all its neighbours.  

“What India is doing in occupied Kashmir falls under the category of war crimes”, he said adding that the pressure on UN Security Council needed to be increased to force it to take tangible steps for the right of self-determination for Kashmiris. 

“Diplomacy and dialogue have failed to increase the pressure on the Security Council, for which people in major cities around the world will have to take to the streets”, he opined.  

He added that it was gratifying that now professional organizations and journals had started raising their voices against the oppression of the Kashmiri people by the Indian government. 

He said that Azad Jammu and Kashmir had a special bond with the UHS as all the three government medical colleges in Kashmir were affiliated to the university.  

“Professor Javed Akram and his team went to the Line of Control (LoC) and proved that when a doctor wants to reach his patient, no border or army can stand in his way”, he said. 

UHS Board of Governors’ Chairman, Justice (retd) Tassaduq Hussain Jilani, said that India had failed to silence the voice of the people of Jammu and Kashmir for the last 70 years.  

“In August last year, around 60 writ petitions were filed in the Indian Supreme Court against the abolition of the special status of Occupied Kashmir, on which no decision has been taken so far”, he added.  He urged that like government medical colleges in Punjab, UHS should also allocate seats for Kashmiris in its M.Phil and PhD programs.  

UHS Vice-Chancellor, Professor Javed Akram announced that his varsity will not collaborate anymore with French institutions in research and academics. 

He condemned the French president’s blasphemous statement.  He announced that the UHS would not enter into any academic or research collaboration with any French institutions.  

Researchers from the Institute of Bioengineering, China, and a delegation from the Pakistan Society of Internal Medicine were also present on the occasion.  

Head of the team of Chinese researchers, Dr Qiu Don Xu, said that the human trial of Chinese vaccine for coronavirus had started in Pakistan and so far 2,000 volunteers had been registered for this trial.  “Our target is to register 10,000 volunteers in coming days”, he added.